Pastor Keith’s message last weekend was convicting.
He kindly called us out, asking us to look inside of us and see if we were answering Christ’s call to child-like faith. He pointed out that most adults are cynical, that we’ve abandoned the simple trust and joy or the sense of wonder we had when we were kids. One of the first places we can put his message into practice is worship this coming Sunday.
I encounter a lot of different resistant attitudes when it comes to worship, but what might be the most common is just plain old pride.
I’m too old for this, we say. I don’t need this. Singing is weird. The worship team is just singing and clapping and lifting their hands because that’s what they’re supposed to do. This is just nonsense. No one actually feels this way about God.
Pride often shows it’s true colors in cynicism.
I mean, I get it. I’ll be the first to admit that worship seems odd. I can only imagine what it’s like for a new person walking into our church on Sunday morning and seeing a room full of people just singing to the ceiling. It’s foreign, almost other-worldly. Expressive worship of God is not the norm in this world.
But it’s not unfamiliar—we all get excited about something.
How many of us hoot and holler in our living rooms watching college football, or how many of us have gone to a concert and come home hoarse (and maybe a little bit deaf) from singing so loud? I know I have.
Expressive, child-like worship might feel strange to us, but what’s more strange? Singing loud at a country music concert or not giving that same sort of passion and joy to a God who so clearly deserves it?
We sing at concerts and shout at sports because that’s normal in this world. What we have to remember is that we are home to another world, and we must respond to it. Worship is the first place we do that.
It’s also where we shake off our pride and start to find the child-like spirit Christ so desires from us. Sing loud like a little child for five minutes and see how fast pride falls away. It’s impressive. You could even call it miraculous.
In the book of 2nd Samuel, King David, the greatest of all Israelite kings, danced before the Lord in front of the whole kingdom. The way the text reads, it appears he did this naked. The king. Dancing naked. Super weird.
But David was making a point. There was no end to which he would sacrifice his pride to the Lord. He was leaving an example for his whole kingdom and as it turned out, to us too.
Please don’t get naked at church this weekend. But maybe we should try setting aside our pride for fifteen minutes and answering God’s call to become like little children. What better way to do that than with a good, old-old-fashioned sing-along?